Like its XK coupe sibling, the XK Convertible is a gracefully-styled grand tourer with ample curb presence. While most comfortable as a long-distance cruiser, it also provides a surprising engaging drive on curvy back-roads.
Aside from its retractable canvas roof -- which takes 18 seconds to be stowed -- the XK Convertible is quite similar to its coupe counterpart. A standard 5.0-liter V8 provides 385 horsepower at 6500 rpm and 380 pound-feet of torque at 3500 rpm.
The motor pairs with a Jaguar Sequential Shift six-speed automatic transmission, which incorporates steering wheel-mounted paddles for manual gear changes. On downshifts, the system even creates a throttle blip to shorten over-run shifts. Fuel economy is rated at 15 mpg in the city and 22 mpg on the highway.
The XK's roof is a power-latching, self-stowing system with three layers including Thinsulate insulation and a Rakona headliner. When the top is down, an aluminum tonneau cover conceals the canvas roof. While many convertibles are only offered with a black roof, the the XK can be ordered with gray, burgundy, green or dark beige canvas.
Thanks to the XK's "Lightweight Vehicle Technology" architecture, the convertible did not need the traditional extra stiffening panels seen on many other convertibles -- meaning there is no added weight and no penalty in stiffness. The XK convertible is actually 19 percent lighter than the previous-generation XK drop-top.
Inside, the XK features a simple but elegant cabin design along with the highest quality leather and wood (aluminum trim is optional) and all of the entertainment and convenience devices one could wish for in a luxury convertible.
Standard and Optional Features
Previously available only as a single, fully-loaded model, the XK can now be spec'd in entry-level Touring trim level as well.
The XK Touring Convertible comes standard with leather upholstery, heated front seats, a 525-watt AM/FM/CD Bowers & Wilkins sound system, dual-zone automatic climate control, Bluetooth smartphone connectivity, a rear parking camera and 19-inch wheels.
Stepping up to the XK Convertible adds a navigation system with a seven-inch LCD touch screen, 20-inch wheels, a heated steering wheel and heated and ventilated front seats.
Although they are not a legal requirement, the Convertible features a Roll-over Protection Device consisting of two aluminum hoops that are automatically deployed if the car's sensors detect the onset of a roll-over accident. The system is deployed by an advanced solid-state gyro sensor system. It's designed to deploy through the rear window even if the roof is up.
Other safety items include dual front and side airbags, traction and stability control systems and electronic brake-force distribution.
The XK convertible competes for the hearts and wallets of drop-top enthusiasts against the BMW 640i Convertible, the Mercedes-Benz SL550 and the Porsche 911 Carrera Cabriolet.